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Verstappen Clinches Austria Sprint Victory as Norris Takes Third

Austrian Grand Prix Sprint

Max Verstappen fended off early challenges from McLaren’s Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri to secure the sprint race victory at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Norris initially pressured Verstappen but lost second place to Piastri during a daring move for the lead on lap five.

In the second half of the race, Norris attempted to reclaim his position from Piastri but couldn’t close the gap.

The Australian driver finished second, leading Norris in a McLaren two-three ahead of George Russell’s Mercedes.

Russell overtook Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari at Turn Four on lap eight, but teammate Lewis Hamilton couldn’t replicate the maneuver, finishing sixth.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, recovering from a qualifying technical issue, climbed from 10th to seventh. Red Bull’s Sergio Perez took the final point in eighth.

Early in the race, six cars—including Verstappen, Norris, Piastri, Sainz, Russell, Hamilton, and Leclerc—formed a tight pack at the front.

The McLarens were competitive, excelling in the slow corners and long straights of the first sector, but the Red Bulls dominated the sweeping faster corners.

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Norris launched a bold attack on Verstappen into Turn Three on lap five, briefly taking the lead before Verstappen reclaimed it at Turn Four. This move allowed Piastri to slip past Norris.

Despite his efforts in the closing laps, Norris couldn’t challenge Piastri due to tire degradation.

Norris remarked, “A good race, but I could have done better in my battle. I tried to challenge Oscar in the end but couldn’t get close enough. We’ll aim to fight tomorrow.”

Piastri added, “I saw an opportunity on the exit of Turn Four. I had a chance to get Max a lap later but couldn’t get close enough.”

Verstappen commented, “A good first lap, but it was tough to escape the DRS. We had to work for this win. There are things to improve for tomorrow.”

The battle behind the top three was equally intense. After passing Russell for fourth on the first lap, Sainz couldn’t maintain his pace against the Mercedes. Russell reclaimed fourth on lap eight, while Hamilton was stuck behind Sainz and Leclerc was instructed to manage his car’s reliability.

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